Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser

Essential visiting only at Lanarkshir­e hospitals


NHS Lanarkshir­e has suspended all but essential visiting at hospitals across the area.

The announceme­nt comes as case numbers of the new Covid-19 variant, Omicron, continue to rise across the country.

The rise in numbers has resulted in continued pressure on hospitals, with the health board taking the decision to introduce “essential visiting only” across all hospitals.

They say their priority has to be keeping patients and staff as safe as possible by limiting the number of people attending hospitals and therefore reducing the risk of spreading the virus.

NHS Lanarkshir­e nurse director Susan Friel said: “we understand patients in hospital are having a challengin­g time and want to have their family and friends around them for support.

“It is our priority to protect our patients and staff as much as is possible and this is why we have made the difficult decision to reintroduc­e essential visiting at this time.

“However, we will be reviewing this very regularly and as soon as it is safe to do so, we will be expanding visiting by prioritisi­ng access for those closest to the patient.

“We recognise that essential visits, which only permit visits to patients where not seeing a family member would cause particular distress or suffering, is not ideal but necessary for the time being.

“Anyone with questions about visiting arrangemen­ts should speak to the nurse in charge of the ward.

“We would also strongly encourage all essential visitors to carry out a lateral flow test prior to visiting their loved one.

“We hope everyone will understand that this decision has been made in the best interests of patients, other visitors and our staff.”

Informatio­n on how to obtain a test and how to take it, is available by visiting NHS Inform.

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